"THE CONVERSATION" Episode #2 with Jamy Bechler, "Success is a Choice" Podcast, Author, Speaker

February 3, 2020

“THE CONVERSATION” Jamy Bechler, Providing Insights on Leadership and Success

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Jamy Bechler is the host of the popular “Success is a Choice” podcast. He is also the author of “The Bus Trip” and “The Leadership Playbook”. The former college basketball coach and high school athletic director now travels across the country speaking and consulting with sports teams and educators about leadership, culture, and teamwork. Jamy is also a certified John Maxwell Leadership Coach.

After a very successful career as a college basketball coach and high school athletic director, Jamy Bechler transitioned into full-time leadership training and motivational speaking in June of 2016. He received his John Maxwell Leadership Certification in March of 2016.

In addition to five eBooks, Bechler is a published author of The Leadership Playbook: Become Your Team’s Most Valuable Leader. He has been published in the Huffington Post and is a regular guest on various radio stations and podcasts.

Bechler now travels across the country speaking to groups and teams on how to reach their full potential and become people of influence. He speaks at some of the top conferences for educators, coaches and administrators.  His work with teams have ranged from the NBA to the Big Ten to small colleges.

Bechler moved from coaching into full-time athletic administration in June of 2014.  As the Director of Athletics at Marion High School in Indiana, he inherited a program with a rich and distinguished tradition. Under Bechler’s leadership, the Marion Giants won their 8th Indiana High School State Championships in boys basketball.  No IHSAA school has won more.  He also oversaw operations and game management for the Bill Green Arena, which is the 5th largest high school gym (7500 seating capacity) in the nation, and is the home of basketball stars Zach Randolph, James Blackmon, Scott Wood, Dave Colescott, Jay Edwards and Julius Mays to name just a few.  Marion high school competes in 22 varsity sports.

Bechler was instrumental in securing the school’s first basketball sectional since 2008 and the first girls’ soccer sectional ever. He also organized the Marion Basketball Classic, which showcased some of the best boys’ basketball teams and players in the state. Bechler also directed the search for a new MHS football coach that led to the hiring of Coach Craig Chambers, who led his previous team to an IHSAA semi-state appearance last year.

Inheriting an athletic department that was in debt and had no yearly budget, Bechler went about putting systems and processes in place to correct this.  He created budgets for the various sports and controlled spending, resulting in the department’s biggest budget surplus in nearly a decade.  He also led the way for the athletic department to provide more than $15,000 in funds to various teams and groups at the high school through the concession stand fundraising program. This amount was double what had been given prior to Bechler’s tenure. He also teamed with Marion Community Schools Creative Development Consultant Mark Fauser and Communications Director Patricia Gibson to spearhead the Giant Challenge alumni vs. athletes fundraising event, design a fresh new look for the Bill Green Arena, and establish an endowment with future students in mind. Additionally he oversaw the dedication and implementation of a new turf field, along with renovations to the softball and baseball facilities.

Bechler also provided a different perspective on marketing Giant athletics, as he greatly increased the school’s social media profile and helped build a large following for the athletic website culminating in it being the most viewed high school athletics site in Indiana during March 2016, according to Varsity News Network.

Prior to accepting the Director of Athletics position, Bechler was the head women’s basketball coach at Martin Methodist College  in Tennessee.  He took the reigns of the RedHawks program in May of 2010. He became the program’s all-time leader in wins and winning percentage. During Bechler’s tenure, the RedHawks achieved a number of memorable accomplishments including breaking the school record for wins in a season (23 during the 2013-’14 season), earning the SSAC Co-West Division Championship in just their first year in the conference (2013-’14), advancing to their first-ever TranSouth Athletic Conference Championship Game (2012-’13), achieving their highest NAIA ranking ever at 19th (January 21, 2014) and receiving the NAIA’s Champions of Character National Women’s Basketball Team Award for their community service activities during the 2013-’14 season.

The RedHawks were known for their rebounding prowess. During the 2013-’14 season, they led the nation in Rebounding Margin (+19), Rebounds per Game (55 rpg) and Offensive Rebounding Average (21/game). They were among the NAIA’s Top-10 in each of these categories in all of Coach Bechler’s years at Martin Methodist College. In addition to their rebounding toughness, they led the nation in Field Goal Percentage-Defense during the 2013-’14 season limiting opponents to 33% shooting. They also led the nation in getting to the free throw line three times and finished 4th in scoring twice at more than 80 ppg.

Individually, RedHawk players earned three All-American awards and seven All-Conference Awards. Academically, the RedHawks were honored with 16 TranSouth Scholar-Athlete awards and the NAIA’s Emil S. Liston award, which honors the nation’s top female student-athlete. This was earned by Jessy Christopher after the 2011-’12 season.

While at Bryan College, Bechler’s teams were known for their toughness and rebounding. In his three years, the Lady Lions finished in the NAIA’s Top-10 for Rebounding Margin culminating in an incredible +18 rpg average during the 2009-2010 season. In addition to rebounding prowess, his teams were constantly winning the free throw game. During the 2009-2010 season alone, the Bryan team fouled the least amount in the conference, shot more free throws than anyone in the conference and made 75% of their shots (first in the conference). Defensively, the Lady Lions were first in the conference in FG Pct. Defense and Scoring Defense. Bechler also coached the national assist leader, Becca Sharpe, during the 2008-2009 season. Bechler also helped lead the Lady Lions to a national ranking, as well as a Top-25 Academic ranking.

Prior to Bryan College, Bechler spent a year each at Tennessee Temple University and Newberry College. At Temple, he took over a program that had only three returners and had lost 80% of its scoring from the previous year. At Newberry, he was the top assistant for a team that earned a trip to the NCAA-II National Tournament. While with the Lady Indian program, he won recruiting battles against DI’s and helped lead the team to Top-5 rankings in Rebounding and Defense, while coaching two players that would go on to play professionally.

During his four years at LeTourneau University in Texas, he was chosen the NCCAA Central Region and the American Southwest Conference East Division Coach of the Year in 2003. His teams also set 11 school, conference and national records for three-point shooting at the NCAA-III school.

Bechler started out on the men’s side as an graduate assistant for Gary Waters at Kent State University. Bechler was there as the foundation was laid for a Golden Flash team that would reach the NCAA’s Elite Eight just a few years later. From Kent, he went to Anderson University in Indiana to coach for Denny Lehnus, who has won more than 800 games in his career.

In addition to his college experience, in 2005, Bechler led a group of Texas high school all-stars to the championship of the King Kamehameha Basketball Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii. His team was undefeated in that tournament.

Administratively, Coach Bechler held the position of Associate Athletic Director in the MMC athletic department and was a representative on the school’s Faculty Senate.  He also served on the NAIA’s National Tournament Committee. Through the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association, he was a member of the Carol Eckman Award Committee, the WBCA Scholarship Award Committee and he was also an officer on the NAIA-WBCA committee.

Bechler grew up in Michigan where he attended Jonesville High School  and played basketball for the legendary Bill Dunn. He is a graduate of Hiram College  in Ohio, where he lettered in basketball, football and track. He earned his Master’s degree in physical education at Kent State.

Bechler and his wife, Tabitha have a son, Jaylen, that was born in November of 2009.

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